What are the Components of Coordinate Measuring Machine (CMM)?

The foundation of the system is just that: a heavy base plate or table which serves as the foundation for an object placed on it to be measured. This is often a massive slab of granite or some other dense material that is stable, rigid, immune to fluctuations caused by the environment, and ground with a very flat top face.

To this table is mounted a moveable bridge or gantry. Vertical posts support a horizontal beam, and on this beam will be suspended another vertical column that holds the measuring probe. The bridge or gantry is able to move along the X-axis. The vertical spindle can move along the bridge thus defining the Y axis. And the probe on the vertical column can move up and down which defines the Z-axis over the table.

At the end of the spindle is the probe. There are different technologies available that can be used as a probe, partly depending on the objects to be measured and the degree of accuracy required. In our case, a precise sphere of ruby is mounted on the tip of the stylus. Finally, the tip of the probe communicates its information to a computer which interprets the data with specialized software to create a 3D map of the part in question from the cumulative set of points.

Extracted from: https://www.starrapid.com/blog/what-is-a-coordinate-measuring-machine/

Knowing about a CMM machine also comes with understanding the functions of its components. Below are the important components of the CMM machine.


Probes are the most popular and important component of a traditional CMM machine responsible for measuring action. Other CMM machines use optical light, cameras, lasers, etc.

Due to their nature, the probes’ tip comes from a rigid and stable material. It must also be temperature resistant such that the size won’t change when there is temperature alteration. Common materials used are ruby and zirconia. The tip can also be spherical or needle-like.

Granite Table

A granite table is an important component of the CMM machine because it is very stable. It is also not affected by temperature, and when compared to other materials, the rate of wear and tear is lower. Granite is ideal for highly accurate measurement because its shape stays the same over time.


Fixtures are also very important tools used as agents of stability and support in most manufacturing operations. They are components of the CMM machine and functions in fixing the parts into place. Fixing the part is required since a moving part can lead to errors in measurement. Other fixing tools available for use are the fixture plates, clamps, and magnets.

Air Compressors and Dryers

Air compressors and dryers are common components of CMM machines such as the standard bridge or gantry-type CMMs.


The software is not a physical component but will be classified as a component. It is an important component that analyzes the probes or other sensitivity components.

Extracted from: https://www.rapiddirect.com/blog/what-is-cmm-machine/

Above sharing just for your reference. When you’re interested in investing a CMM Machine to improve your quality process, select a supplier who offer a quality service and meet your specific needs.

If you have any enquiry with dimensional equipment, welcome to contact us by email: enquiry@mspmetrology.com


10 Mar 2022

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